Comment – Jun-Dec 2014 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog

Comment – Jun-Dec 2014


Archived Comments – Jun-Dec 2014

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Updated 1st January 2015


68 comments on “Comment – Jun-Dec 2014

  1. Although the Puzzle website is now almost working (not the Leaderboard), I wonder where they find the people who manage it. Today, the GGK solution was published instead of the puzzle. Unforgiveable!

  2. BD, this is not a comment on the puzzle, more early morning observation. The theme of 27513 has to have been created just for Scchua’s talents. Go for it in the review!

  3. May I ask if anyone else lost their access to the Telegraph site when they upgraded in January? I know, I know, how could I have been without my daily crossword since then but I had access to ‘real’ copies via a Telegraph taker! Have been unable to get a response from the ‘’ email address.
    Thanks, Louise

    1. Welcome to the blog D Davenport

      I’m not aware of anything being underlined in blue – it’s probably a feature of the browser that you are using.

  4. Hey Dave or whoever you are

    I do endless DT crosswords, really enjoy most, but constantly irritated by sexist illustrative pics. Just did DT 27294, cannot believe the sexist answer to 5 down. Completely enraged me and spoiled crossword. You guys (yes, I think you are all men) need to become aware of the age in which you live. A clue which defines a fussy person as an ‘old woman’ is completely unacceptable. Stop the sexism, get a few women on board – yes, I will help as a v good crossword solver if you like – but just get into the 21st century. If this continues, going elsewhere for my crosswords. Listen – I am not alone, as 50% of the population, in my reaction to this.

    1. You are entitled to your opinion but not to appoint yourself as being representative of 50% of the population. I have removed the capitals from your comment as that really is being rude and, if repeated, will result in your comment being deleted.

      1. BD, are you sure that’s not Miffypops using a pseudonym after a few glasses of his favourite tipple?

    2. Hey Norma or whoever you are

      Plenty of female solvers and bloggers on this site who are mature enough to handle a bit of tongue in cheek illustration. Don’t hold your breath about being invited to “help.” We have standards.

    3. “old woman ” is a phrase used by some to mean fussy, and is not particularly sexist.On the other hand , I, representing only myself , find some of the pics of half naked girls offensive , not on sexist grounds but because it offends my very old fashioned sense of modesty.I can’t see how “maturity “would make me feel better about a lack of standards.

  5. Well Norma, think you can take the hint that probably most of us would prefer if you keep your promise and join the few remaining Guardian readers and leave the rest of us in peace. Don’t have any idea why you decided to pick on poor Dave, the rest of us think he does a fabulous job

  6. I do the crossword in ‘The Week’ magazine & would like to know if there is site which reviews the puzzles. As it is a prize crossword the answers do not appear until two weeks after publication by which time the magazine has usually been purloined by one of my sons which leaves me wondering if I got the right answer & just as importantly how. Many thanks.

  7. A lil’ help w/ another ‘Endeavour’ puzzle, please…

    I first ran across this excellent blog/site while running down another ‘Endeavour’ “cruciverbalism”,
    as you already answered one crossword clue coincidentally appearing in &or from:
    Endeavour (Inspector Morse Prequel), episode 1-1of4 ‘Girl’
    “Running over a dune is an effort” (9 letters)
    … with the answer, of course, being the Inspector & Series name:

    DT 26897

    “27a Running over a dune is an effort (9)
    { ENDEAVOUR } – This effort is an anagram (running) of OVER A DUNE.”

    There’s another “cryptic clue” in the same episode:
    “‘After beard teased, an exclamation of surprise will bring you home.’, eleven letters.”
    it eventually comes about that the answer, “breadcrumbs”, ‘leads’ DC Morse to yet another puzzle, which reveals the murderer.

    Now, “…will bring you home”, Hansel & Gretel, trail of “breadcrumbs” to ‘lead/bring them home’, no problem… however:
    1) In “After beard teased,…”, is “teased” in lieu of ‘combed’?, as in, upon ‘teasing’/’combing’ one’s “beard” there might be “breadcrumbs” left “after”?
    2) How does, “…an exclamation of surprise…” apply at all?… is that an English ‘thing’?, do people say, “Oh breadcrumbs!” or something like that?

    would very much appreciate any help!,
    thanx much in advance,

    [BTW: 1st tried your “Contact” form but your ‘non-robot’ verification doesn’t work.]

    1. Welcome to the blog w

      BTW the ‘non-robot’ verification does work. If you could see the amount of spam that i would receive if it wasn’t there you would understand why I use it.

      1. thanx for the welcome!

        Wasn’t questioning the necessity of ‘non-robot’ verification!, not in the least!… was only saying it wasn’t functioning, even tho in Firefox I enabled all scripts/cookies, & then, instead of faithful Firefox & its tried-&-true AddOns, instead tried it with much despised IE & it still wouldn’t work!… & thought you’d want to know.

        Now that the tech stuff is gone over, I’m hoping you & your readers may have some illuminating thoughts on my questions!

    2. Hi w :).

      After an anagram (teased) of beard – BREAD – comes an exclamation of effort – CRUMBS!. Leading to, as you rightly saw, the trail that led (well, it failed to lead, didn’t it?) Hansel and Gretel home. I haven’t heard “crumbs!” used in a while, but I might start exclaiming “breadcrumbs!”

      1. Well, “breadcrumbs!”… so, as “running” was in the 1st clue of that Endeavour episode ‘Girl’, “teased” also was in the 2nd, both meaning ‘anagram of’…
        Anglophile I be, gonna have to start doin’ y’all’s crosswords over there ‘cross the pond to pick up more of the lingo… ‘specially if ‘Endeavour’ keeps tossin’ in these gems.
        … thank you very much Kind Kitty!

        1. PS: must admit to some small pride in having conjured ‘teasing breadcrumbs out of one’s beard’ out of thin air… or out of a hirsute chin, or sumpthin…

  8. Far more mundane than that. I think Scchua is going to be stuck for his images tomorrow (27543) apart from 1 a and 9A!

  9. No doubt this has been covered before, but on the rare occasions where I am tempted to use a letter hint they don’t work. Is this a known problem? I’m using the Chromium browser (open source version of Chrome). I’ll try to test under Firefox when it next happens.

    The blog is very helpful and has turned me from a “finish once in a long while” to “finish most days, sometimes slowly” solver. I do think a reduction in the number of salacious pictures would be an improvement.


  10. I’ve been using this blog – it is brilliant and extremely useful – for a few years now, almost on a daily basis. However, I so often have trouble downloading the Telegraph crosswords – their website is rubbish; how hard can it be to get that right? – that I’m thinking of changing to try the Guardian one instead. I know that I’ll need the sort of help given on this blog, though. Is there anything similar for the Guardian? If not, Big Dave, would you start covering the Guardian cryptic as well? Please? If not, why not?

    1. Welcome to the blog Ro

      Two reasons why not – firstly because fifteensquared reviews Guardian puzzles (OK not as well as we do here) and secondly because I hardly ever have time to solve the Guardian puzzles

  11. Is anyone else having problems accessing archive crosswords from the Telegraph site? When I finish one early I like to get an old one to look over and I haven’t been able to do this. Telegraph website or my problem?

    1. I have just tried this. If you search by puzzle type and date you get no results. If you type in a puzzle number, you can access old puzzles. I think it must be the Telegraph Puzzles website.

  12. Is tomorrow Scchua’s last day? If so, I can imagine some fun pictures with 5d , 12a and 20a – and something weird with 18a !!

  13. I think I’m jinxed! I’m normally signed in automatically to the Telegraph puzzle site but since my New Zealand internet provider had a hacker problem over the weekend, I don’t seem to be able to sign in. My details appear but the ‘login’ button just doesn’t do anything. Anyone else having problems, or is it just me?

    1. Hi Elaine. Have just checked and we can log in to the Telegraph site as normal. However we are with Slingshot, not Xtra so did not have the problem during the weekend. Cheers.

  14. Not around tomorrow but feel obliged to comment tonight, if i may, re DT27590, without giving anything away. Bit boring. Very mechanical. Not up to usual Tuesdays. Not really worth staying up for! For me, *+/**(just about). I am sure many will disagree on Tuesday. Google provided the explanation for 19a which was a write in with some of the checking letters but didn’t make sense. Now to try the Toughie.

  15. Hi Everyone just a quick note whilst my internet connection lasts!!!!! I am still having massive problems with it!! I’m lucky if I get a half hour connection each day so I just wanted to say I am awayin France most of next month but hope to be back full time in Nov pending the resolution of internet problem!!!! Be good

  16. Anyone else having trouble accessing the DT puzzle page? I’ve tried IE & Chrome & neither seem to be working properly.

  17. Is it the start of the Telegraph silly season again? World Pay have just completed my auto renewal and now I have no crossword again and a nice message telling me my ‘subscription has been cancelled or expired’. Exactly the same as last October and then it was February before I was re-connected. Fortunately for me Dave was very obliging at sending pdfs.
    As usual no reply from the Telegraph no helpline :-)

  18. Then it must be just me. Maybe an IE issue. And that’s fine. Those pesky little creatures bouncing all over the place make me cross-eyed!

    1. Ditch IE and use Firefox – it’s free, it’s a shedload better than IEand you can have adbloc to get rid of those pesky adverts that appear everywhere. You could use adbloc to block the emoticons!

  19. Saturday Crossword 27,642

    please can you give a hint to 21a
    I have entered the only possible answer, but I don’t see how it fits completely with the clue


  20. Hi Dave. I’ve been a fan of the Telegraph cryptic crossword for many years and have only recently discovered your blog. Often I can finish the crossword without help but really appreciate your clues when I’m stuck. I rarely attempt the toughie – it’s so hard to fathom. Anyway thanks for the work you do – it saves much frustration!

  21. Good morning

    Your pop-up requesting full answers not be posted is fine by me, but why oh why do picture clues actually give the answer to some clues? Surely this is doing the exact opposite of what is requested.

    May I request that the pictures (as today, a *****, a *****, a ***** on a broom that isn’t really a representation of ******) not be posted, but stick to hints in future?

    Thanks in anticipation

    1. Welcome to the blog Peter

      That’s the way it is, and has been for nearly six years, and I won’t be changing it. There are a few gimmes each week and no more. [… and this is the restrained version of my reply!]

    2. It’s Big Dave’s site. He does the work, he gets to make the rules. I think that standard blog procedure and perfectly fair. Besides, folks around here like the visual hints, and for the less experienced solvers sometimes it gives them a way into the puzzle. I have to say that when I was brand new around here, I wouldn’t have dreamed of expecting changes to be made simply because I didn’t personally like them.

  22. Thanks for that, and apologies for the “answers” I inadvertently slipped in.

    I do find the site invaluable, whilst having an answer and pondering how the heck I got it from the clue. Been a Saturday Telegraph buff since 1978, and usually have it finished mid morning. It is the only day I do take a newspaper, (due to lack of time!) and was recommended your site several weeks ago by a fellow traveller on a coach tour to Spain. I was able to help her finish her crossword on the Monday!!

    Please keep up the great work you are all doing, and PLEASE???…..Try to keep the pictures to a minimum???

    Kindest regards

    1. Welcome to the blog Christopher

      I’m not altogether sure why you are imparting this information, as it is given in my page on palindromes and semordlinaps.

  23. May I beg your indulgence for the Tuesday Cryptic, Toughie and (if possible) Quickie in PDF? I had some computer issues, the resolution of which meant I had to re-register my password on some sites, including the DT. Unfortunately, the DT will not accept my password and I have requested a new one but past experience tells me that this could take a day or so.

  24. Hi Dave
    I have been using your blog for many months to improve my skills – it’s really helped and is very much appreciated.
    I have never commented before because I do them months in arrears – I print off the DT crosswords in order and solve them – about 4 months behind (but slowly catching up!)
    I am looking for the blog for MPP – 023 (Cluedo) and can’t find it anywhere – can you help please?

  25. Thank you for the link.
    FYI I am still unable to find that particular blog, using your Google search engine.

  26. please give explanation for forsaken outlaw taken care of in a piece of dialogue. equals abandoned

    1. Welcome to the blog, jack.
      We don’t offer a clue-solving service, but just this once …
      To outlaw is to BAN and taken care of is DONE. Put both these inside A (from the clue) and the first letter (piece) of D(ialogue).

    2. I know the feeling Jack:
      “a piece of ” could mean any of the 8 letters of dialogue.
      Consider yourself lucky that it wasn’t ” a piece of the quick brown fox jumps over a lazy god”.

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